Lar Corbett: his movement will prove a real threat to Kilkenny’s defence again. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

O’Shea’s men to confirm the impression of the first day – that their top gear is ultimately higher than Kilkenny’s

 Kilkenny’s Paul Murphy and Brian Hogan get to grips with Patrick Maher of Tipperary during the All-Ireland hurling final. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Draw was a fair result after majestic display by both sides

Kilkenny’s Padraig Walsh is chased down by Tipp’s Kieran Bergin

On a day when even small influences can prove vital Eamon O’Shea’s team can find key footholds in an impossibly even match

 Tipperary’s Lar Corbett (left) reaches for the ball as  Lorcán McLoughlin of Cork tries to challenge. Photograph:  Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Supremacy over an out-of-touch Cork runs throughout entire All-Ireland SHC semi-final contest

“Midfield is  another area of big improvement for Cork this year,” says Nicky English. “They were comprehensively outplayed by Clare at midfield in last year’s All-Ireland final so they went away and produced Aidan Walsh (right)”. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Expect the scores to flow in an open encounter but powerful engine room can tip the balance for Rebels

Kilkenny’s Paul Murphy battles for possession with Limerick’s  Graeme Mulcahy at Croke Park yesterday. Photograph: Inpho

Nicky English: Limerick conceded goals at the worst time and couldn’t goal themselves

The likes of Kevin Downes will have to step up and take on Kilkenny’s defence at Croke Park.  Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Munster finalists will have to fire on all cylinders to get the better of Brian Cody’s men who are so comfortable in Croke Park

Dublin’s John McCaffrey has nowhere to go as Pádraic Maher, Gearoid Ryan, Kieran Bergin and Brendan Maher close in during yesterday’s All-Ireland quarter-final at  Semple Stadium, Thurles. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

It couldn’t be set up better for Tipperary but strictly on form they still have a lot to do

Wexford’s Keith Rossiter fends off Clare’s Darach Honan. Nicky English believes the absence of Rossiter or Liam Óg McGovern would represent a serious blow for Wexford’s ambitions against Limerick. Photograph: Inpho

Liam Dunne’s side have the momentum to get past Limerick while Tipperary should prove too strong for struggling Dublin

Cork’s Alan Cadogan and Tom Condon of Limerick clash in yesterday’s Munster Hurling Final at  Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.

It’s starting to look like this year’s All-Ireland will be decided amongst the big three

Limerick’s Richie McCarthy battles with Cork’s Patrick Horgan during last year’s Munster final at the Gaelic Grounds. Photo: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Champions will pose a serious threat but challengers to make most of home advantage

Tipperary were slow to get balls in to  Séamus Callanan but when they did, he scored twice. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho.

Kilkenny will face tougher battles this summer than against lacklustre Dublin

TJ Reid celebrates scoring the first goal of the game for Kilkenny against Galway. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

TJ Reid in clinical form as Cats book a Leinster final showdown with Dublin

Kilkenny’s Jackie Tyrrell and Andrew Smith of Galway square up last week at O’Connor Park. Smith and Iarla Tannian will have to ensure they focus primarily on their hurling in the replay if Galway are to prosper. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Brian Cody’s side somehow left it behind them last week but they still look too strong for Galway

Galway’s Niall Burke scores his side’s opening goal despite the efforts of Kilkenny’s JJ Delaney and goalkeeper Eoin Murphy. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Danger for Brian Cody’s side is they have created a monster by not finishing off the Tribesmen first time around

Kilkenny’s Richie Hogan: key performer up front. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Brian Cody’s team seem to have bounced back from a poor 2013 championship and are entitled to favouritism

Aidan Walsh of Cork, seen here battling with Clare’s Pat Donnellan and John Conlon,  epitomised Cork’s superior resolve and desire in the  Munster SHC semi-final at Semple Stadium. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Dublin were also very impressive in defeating Wexford without key man Danny Sutcliffe

Clare’s Tony Kelly: Cork will surely deputise a man-marker to track the outstanding 2013 Hurler of the Year. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

The arrival of Aidan Walsh, Mark Ellis, Bill Cooper and Alan Cadogan has strengthened Jimmy Barry-Murphy’s hand

A photo-montage of Cork goalkeeper Anthony Nash scoring from a penalty during an Allianz League match against Tipperary earlier this season. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho.

‘I think there’s a real need to look at this from the perspective of safety’

Tipperary’s Brendan Maher exchanges greetings with Kilkenny’s  TJ Reid after the National League final in Thurles. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Tipp goalkeeper Darren Gleeson’s late mistake proves crucial in a game of tight margins

The league has worked out well for Tipperary to date – despite the high-scoring loss to Kilkenny – and they don’t have a whole lot to lose in Sunday’s final. Photograph: Inpho

While Cats have held upper hand of late, Tipp are on a roll that may get them over line

Clare’s Conor McGrath scores his side’s fourth goal at a critical juncture  in Saturday’s outstanding All-Ireland hurling final replay at Croke Park. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Young Banner men proved their quality when brave Cork asked the big questions

Clare’s Darach Honan will be looking to make more of an impression against Shane O’Neill in today’s All-Ireland final replay. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Having seen their opponents miraculously survive the drawn match, Clare will wonder what exactly they have to do to win

Cork’s Patrick Cronin is challenged by   Brendan Bulger of Clare. Photograph:   Ryan Byrne/Inpho

After a poor first half, the final lived up to what has been an epic championship

Clare’s Darach Honan holds off Stephen McDonnell of Cork during the Munster SHC semi-final, a game where the Clare forward threatened to rule the roost. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Rebels can just about edge clash of the two best teams of 2013

Clare team silenced the huge Limerick crowd early

Davy Fitzgerald’s team made hurling look an easy game

 Limerick’s Tom Condon and Richie McCarthy tackle Cork’s Luke O’Farrell during the Munster final at the Gaelic Grounds.  Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

John Allen’s men look strong enough to master the challenge from a resurgent young Clare team

Dublin and Cork teams shake hands before the game. Photograph: Inpho.

As good and as exciting a game I’ve ever seen in this the best hurling championship of my lifetime

Cork have proved very reliant on Pat Horgan in their championship outings to date. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Great championship approaches endgame with little between first two semi-finalists

Kilkenny’s Henry Shefflin recieves a second yellow card and then a red from referee Barry Kelly at Thurles

Cork and Clare the deserving winners of their respective quarter-finals in Thurles

Richie Hogan has started to come to the fore for Kilkenny and will pose a huge threat to Cork’s defence at Thurles. Photo: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Clare get a tentative vote to see off inconsistent Galway in the other quarter-final

Limerick players celebrate in the dressing room after their victory over Cork. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

The Munster final win was fantastic for hurling, for the team, for manager John Allen, and especially for Limerick’s loyal suppo(...)

Tipperary’s Eoin Kelly feels the full force of a challenge from Limerick’s Tom Condon  during the Munster semi-final  at the Gaelic Grounds Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

There’s a long-standing tradition of Cork improving once they get the scent of a Munster title

Dublin’s Paul Ryan scores a goal against Galway during yesterday’s Leinster senior hurling final. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Run of games has seen Anthony Daly’s side improve at a startling rate

Kilkenny’s Aidan Fogarty holds off Shane McGrath of Tipperary during the NHL final. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Loser of this high-stakes qualifier will be staring into the hurling abyss

Dublin’s Paul Ryan will have to be in good form with his free-taking. Photograph: Inpho

But there is also a chance that Galway are timing their run to perfection

 Conal Keaney was one of the many men to shine for Dublin in their win over Kilkenny. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Daly’s men have lifted their standards in a championship that is wide open

Kilkenny have been missing the drive of Michael Fennelly in midfield. Photograph:  Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Dublin will push the Cats but I still expect them to edge it

Clare’s Pádraic Collins reacts after missing one of his side’s  goal scoring chance against Cork. The misses cost them the game. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Clare will be disappointed as it’s certainly taken a twist this past weekend

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